The newest Breitling Navitimer models are new GMT versions that sport quite beefy 48mm wide cases and also new 46mm wide Navitimer models.
Breitling makes watches for guys who like big dial replica Breitling watches. That might just be a good slogan for the brand moving forward. In fact, among the mainstream luxury brands, Breliting is among the few that routinely make watches that I actually find too large for my wrists – and I am a guy who likes large watches. It means bigger guys who like to show-off have ample choice within the Breitling product catalog. So with that said, let’s take a look at the new Breitling Navitimer GMT and see if your wrist can brave it.
To be fair, the Breitling Navitimer GMT cheap fake watches are not that much larger than other Navitimer models (though you can get Breitiling Navimtimer collection pieces as small as 40mm wide, I believe). The Breitling Navitimer 01 is 46mm wide. Both of these watches contain in-house made Breitling mechanical chronograph movements. While the three-hand version contains the caliber 01 movements, the new Breitling Navitimer GMT contains Breitling caliber 04 – which simply adds a GMT hand for a 24 hour time or a second time zone to the other features such as 12 hour chronograph. The movement operates at 4Hz and has a power reserve of about 70 hours.
I actually don’t know why Breitling decided to increase the GMT’s size 2mm more than the standard chronograph movement-based Navitimer 01. Actually, I have some pretty good ideas why though. Watch brands sometimes do this in order to create additional differentiating factors between their watches so that, for the consumer, the choice isn’t just “GMT hand or not.” I don’t think there was an outcry from Breitling consumers that 48mm wide Navitimer options were needed. It does help offer additional flavor though, if you are the type of person keen on the Navitimer family – one of Breitling’s oldest collections that started in the 1950s. Furthermore, this isn’t the only available Breitling Navitimer with a GMT hand.
In addition to the 48mm wide GMT Breitling copy watches for men also produces the rather less expensive Navitimer World which comes in a 46mm wide case and has a chronograph/GMT complication. The difference is that the Navitimer World does not have an in-house made movement. It’s Swiss ETA Valjoux 7750-based movement that has a different chronograph layout.
Admittedly, the “tri-compax” layout of the Breitling caliber 04 movement is slightly more attractive. More so, the caliber 04 equipped models have a sapphire crystal window display caseback – which is still something uncommon for Breitling watches.
What makes a Navitimer a “Navitimer” is the rotating slide-rule bezel. This retro calculator gives the (skilled) pilot wearer the ability to make a series of calculations, assuming all the instruments in his or her aircraft are down, and he or she is still able to fiddle with a watch during emergency flight. I’ve heard mixed things from various pilots about whether or not use of a slide-rule is still taught in pilot school. At least a few military pilots claim that it is.
Breitling was founded in 1884 and right from the start the company specialised in chronographs. In fact it’s fair to say that many of the modern-day chronograph characteristics we know and love can be attributed – at least in part – to developments undertaken by the company. In 1942, Breitling introduced the first watch with a circular slide rule, the Chronomat. Some years later (1954) the legendary Navitimer made its debut. The focus of today’s article however is on the Chronomat, perhaps one of, if not, the most commercially successful Breitling model of the past sixty years. Contrary to popular belief, it is the Chronomat not the Navitimer that has proven to be Breitling’s biggest seller. Today we’re taking a closer look at the latest iteration, the Chronomat Black Steel 44 SE. First though, some background.
What is the Chronomat?
It is generally accepted that the Chronomat made its public sales debut in 1942 and this is the date that has been quoted for many years by the Breitling Company. The life of the Breitling Chronomat black dial fake watches began in 1940 with the application for a Swiss government patent for an innovative circular slide rule to be used in conjunction with a wrist chronograph. The circular slide-rule design of the Chronomat has come to be known as the ‘Type 42’. Emphasis was placed on the watch’s application in engineering and mathematics, science and industry, positioning it as an analog computer for your wrist.
The 1940’s Chronomat is regarded as one of the most historically important Breitlings ever made, a true classic. There is a red 0 – 100 scale near the middle of the dial which can be used for reading 1/100ths of a minute, necessary for making accurate computations using the slide-rule. The Swiss cross and the number 217012 on the dial refer to the Swiss government patent that was granted in 1940. As with other chronographs of the period, the minute register was marked at 3, 6 and 9 minutes as long-distance phone calls were charged in 3-minute increments back then. The rotating bezel included an outer telemeter scale and the watch was equipped with the legendary Calibre Venus 175.
The Chronomat’s functionality helped create one of the greatest aviation chronographs ever made, the Navitimer, and from 1954 up to 1962 both models co-existed, targeting different segments of the market. The first was promoted back then as the chronograph for engineers, the second as a tool watch for pilots. However, in the July 1962 edition of the AOPA Pilot magazine, the newly designed Chronomat (Ref.808) was promoted as a watch suitable for pilots. Despite this confusion, the model’s character did not change. The Chronomat went on to be produced in many forms including a version of the first automatic chronograph watch in the late 1960s and a quartz non-chronograph during the 1970s. Then in the 1980s it was reborn in a different form as a pilot’s watch without the slide-rule.
After the catastrophic Quartz crisis Breitling Chronomat series replica watches had to re-invent itself. In 1984 the Chronomat (Ref.81950) was (re)introduced. This new incarnation was designed with input from Italian military pilots however it was very different than the iconic Navitimer. In the place of the old type 42 slide rule it had a rotating timing bezel with four projecting “rider tabs”, easy to grip while wearing gloves in the cockpit. They also provided a measure of protection for the crystal. The pushers and crown were made more prominent and therefore easier to use while wearing gloves. This also marked the first time Breitling used the Valjoux 7750 movement.